December 4, 2010

Have You Got The Time?

This week has been much of a write-off. Besides having my usual students, I had two government French tests to do on Friday – reading and writing.

My French isn’t too bad and I can usually pass as an intermediate, but it’s often a struggle. And don’t expect perfection. My French teacher often wondered how I could use conditionals with ease yet mess up my prepositions so badly. I take French courses here and there trying to keep it up and fresh, but ironically, I have little opportunity for practice. When I have the chance to speak with some colleagues it’s usually just the pleasantries, and there’s absolutely no chance of speaking French with my students. I’m being paid to speak with them in English, not just during class, but also before and after.

This week was cram week and it isn’t fun to cram with languages. Literature, environmental science, business, okay – doable. But languages, forget it. My teacher, who was also swamped this week, was nice enough to meet with me and give me some tips, notes, and some practice tests. I also borrowed some materials from school to help me out and dug out my notes. An advantage was that I know what the test was about, what ‘they’ are looking for, and tricks that get you (ie Anglicisms). I took the tips and tricks I give my students and applied them for myself. Doesn’t seem to bad, does it?

With a week of cramming things got a little neglected around the house. Pans from the previous weekend were left on the stove. Not as much laundry got washed, and if it did, it was on the drying rack a lot longer than usual. Papers were left on the dining room table instead of going into my students’ files, hence being left at home. And Zoba still wanted her scratches and playtime. Like a usual cat, these didn’t last too long before she got bored or tired (our critter is a little out of shape). Raspberry Roobios tea from David’s Tea helped keep my nose in the books.

Dinner was fast and easy this week. I picked up some tilapia and chicken breasts and made enough to last a few evenings. I put them on some foil, drizzled some lemon juice on the foil (not the meat), sprinkled some herbs de Provence on them all, and popped them into the oven. I had also picked up those big packaged salads, the ones in the container with all the veggies. With a homemade dressing we could still have a quick and healthy meal.

Some canned soup got me through the week too. Some of my students had cancelled due to meetings so I got to come home for lunch and get more studying done. We always have some cans or boxes in the cupboard and while I don’t usually like having them as a meal (homemade is my way to go), they are perfect for those days you forgot to put a lunch together.

With some crumbled feta cheese, fresh ground pepper, and a slice of gf bread it warms you up (and it was chilly earlier this week) and gets you going for another few hours. Or in my case, until the next study break.

And how did the tests go? Don’t ask. I’m purposely not thinking about them. We’ll see what happens with the results arrive in a week or two.

BTW, Campbells’s is introducing gluten-free labelling on their products


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